Fostering European Drought Research and Science-Policy Interfacing

The Challenge
Drought is natural hazard that has hit Europe hard over the last decades. Likely it will become more frequent and more severe due to the increased likelihood of warmer Northern winters and hotter Mediterranean summers. There is an urgent need to improve drought preparedness through increased knowledge, drought management plans and an improved science-policy interfacing that will reduce vulnerability to future drought and the risks they pose for Europe. Drought-R&SPI will address this pressing need. Read more in the flyer

Concluding DROUGHT-R&SPI Conference, March 2015
The DROUGHT-R&SPI project was successfully concluded with an International Conference on DROUGHT: Research and Science-Policy Interfacing that was held in Valencia, Spain, 10-13 March 2015. The conference was attended by 135 participants; 90 men and 45 women from 31 different countries that covered all the 5 continents.

The conference included 61 oral presentations and 36 posters. A total of 73 of these contributions were also compiled in a book published by CRC/Balkema (Andreu et al., 2015). Parallel to the conference the 4th pan-European Drought Dialogue Forum was held in Valencia. A technical visit was organized on 13 March 2015. It included a technical visit to several water resources management facilities within the Jucar River Basin with emphasis in the role they play in drought management and mitigation, and decrease of vulnerability and increase of resilience. Read this report of the conference outcomes.
Andreu, J., Solera, A., Paredes-Arquiola, J., Haro-Monteagudo, D. & Van Lanen, H.A.J. (Eds.) (2015): Drought: Research and Science-Policy Interfacing. CRC/Balkema Publishers, 514 pg.

Expected Results
Drought-R&SPI will deliver the following:
  • enhanced knowledge of past droughts (underlying processes, frequencies, severities and scales), in particular driving atmospheric factors and characteristics of the most extreme historic events at the pan-European scale
  • in-depth understanding of environmental and socio-economic impacts at a small scale in water-stressed regions (case studies) and considering the large-scale drivers
  • past responses to drought events at the case study scale, and identify best practice examples and lessons learnt crucial for the development of drought management planning
  • suite of drought indicators that integrate physical, impact and vulnerability indices, addressing different spatio-temporal scales and water-related sectors
  • innovative methodology for early warning (monitoring and forecasting) of drought at the pan-European scale
  • drought dialogue fora (DDF's) at different scales for science-policy interfacing
  • drought hazard and potential vulnerabilities at the case study and pan-European scale in the 21st century to identify drought sensitive sectors and
  • web-based information and knowledge exchange and sharing facilitated by the European Drought Centre (EDC) 

Project objectives

  • Drought as a natural hazard, incl. climate drivers, drought generating processes and occurrences
  • Environmental and socio-economic impacts
  • Vulnerabilities, risks and policy responses, incl. the further development of drought management plans in support of EU and other international policies